Customer Experience, or CX, is essential to any successful business. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to understand what exactly “CX” means, thanks to common misconceptions and conflicting information available on the topic. The topic becomes even more blurry as vendors attempt to position themselves as CX solution providers while offering products that address just a small portion of what CX truly encompasses. Adding to the confusion are closely related – but not interchangeable – topics like Customer Service and User Experience.
So, what is Customer Experience really? Many pieces have been written attempting to establish the “true definition” of CX. Many take the path of acknowledging that CX means something different to everyone but also suggests that that may be true internally as well.
At Avtex, we define CX as the sum of ALL interactions an individual has with your brand before, during and after a product purchase or service engagement. It’s the feeling a customer has when working with a brand and the collaborative efforts behind the scenes that help create a seamless interaction. It is not the individual touchpoints or tech-driven processes that help identify the valuable trends to support the experience, but a holistic approach based on a customer’s own actions, tendencies and business history.
Other Helpful Definitions
To better clarify the topic of CX, it may be helpful to define the other terms that are often incorrectly associated with it, including customer service and user experience.
- Customer service: Customer service exists in the individual interactions and touchpoints. It is the smooth tech-driven processes that help your customer better utilize their systems and interact with your brand. Customer service allows a brand to speed up the transaction a customer is having and provides the tools that focus in on human interaction, providing a brand with a jumping-off point towards exceptional CX. Customer service lives in the ability to have a single caller interaction that is productive and friendly, while CX is the overarching standard that call aims to meet.
- User experience: User experience is the interaction a customer has with a company, its services and products. It is the user-friendly processes that aids your customer in their business and ensure that there is benefit from their relationship with your company. User experience allows your customers to avoid the headaches they may face when utilizing new software and business practices and allows them to focus on the experience they provide their customers. User experiences contribute to the CX a company is able to provide each and every day.
Exceptional customer experiences are the result of brands engaging all the tools and processes they can to ensure their customers are receiving the very best of their business. Customer service and user experience are critical components of that CX result a business is looking to achieve. By providing seamless interactions and user-friendly processes a customer’s experience will absolutely be impacted, likely in a positive way. It’s important to understand the key differences in these definitions but to ultimately recognize the significance of including each of these aspects in a holistic strategy.
Learn More About the Importance of CX
Every member of your organization should be invested in understanding the concept of CX, and your strategies for delivering exceptional experiences to your customers. View our on-demand webinar The Cost of Bad Customer Experience for more information on the importance of CX and its potential impact on your business.